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Lag spikes in Games on Old pc

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December 28, 2010 9:47:35 AM

Hi all, on my current pc which i'm planning to change soon, i have a slight problem that I want to fix if i can until i get my new pc. I'm currently playing Games like Counter strike 1.6 and warcraft Frozen throne so their not very intensive games but while playing online, every 30seconds to 3 minutes, i get an about 1-3 second lag spike which just stops the whole game. Now that does get very annoying.

My pc is an Dell dimension 9150 with:
Windows XP home SP3
1GB Ram
Intel Pentium 4 @ 3.00ghz
radeon x600 256mb Video card

I do think i know the possible causes of the problems - The pc hasn't been reinstalled for it's 5 year lifespan (never had a reload/reinstall cd and didn't feel like spending £50 for something dell should have provided).
Or the video card, not because it's not good enough but because i have other problems with it such as sometimes i boot up my pc and it works, other times i boot up my pc and... it doesn't work. :p 

I've updated all my drivers and have also tried reinstalling the video card drivers (without the cd, don't have that either) but it just never works, it tells me to restart the pc, and when i do, nothing has happened.

It's not an internet problem as i have an xbox 360 and a family member has a better pc and they both work fine in games no problems.

So well, the reason i'm posting is to see if you guys have any ideas on something that i could try and do or live up with the pain of lag spikes until i get a new pc. Thanks for any help!

Oh and sorry if i posted in the wrong section, wasn't entirely sure where to put this thread in.

More about : lag spikes games

December 28, 2010 11:27:41 AM

Install another gig of RAM and re-install the OS for a cheap and effective upgrade.
December 28, 2010 11:39:10 AM

Like I said - i don't have anything available to me that i can use to reinstall my computer and don't feel like spending money on a pc that i'm going to replace soon. I was more thinking of something i can do to reduce these lag spikes, certain updates/software etc ^^
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December 28, 2010 1:27:29 PM

There is no magic software to fix a slower computer or one that needs the OS re-installed to clear things out. You can try to run the driver updates fro the system.
December 28, 2010 1:42:08 PM

I know but there is always hope right? lol and i'm not 100% sure that the problem is from the OS but it probbably is. I've wanted that reinstall cd off dell since 2007 and they never did give it to me... At one point i even paid them £32, waited 4 weeks and then they returned the money with no explanation. Worst customer support ever :( 

I'll try updating again, see what happens.
December 28, 2010 1:56:47 PM

orkie said:
I know but there is always hope right? lol and i'm not 100% sure that the problem is from the OS but it probbably is. I've wanted that reinstall cd off dell since 2007 and they never did give it to me... At one point i even paid them £32, waited 4 weeks and then they returned the money with no explanation. Worst customer support ever :( 

I'll try updating again, see what happens.


Track down an OEM XP disk, can probably find one in a PC shop or maybe post a local ad for one on a craigslist type site. You should be able to use the XP code off your comouter with an OEM XP disk to re-install Windows. This may not work, some OEM disks are tied to certain set of keys, but maybe worth a try. Just pre-download the drivers for your system and you will be good.
December 28, 2010 2:54:14 PM

I'll give it a try but only if the price is to a minumum and i have a feeling they won't be too generous in pc shops, haven't though of asking friends for a XP disk though, that might work.

Also,Is there any chanse stuff like, CCleaner and Disk difragmenting could help? I've done them before with no luck but hey there's always the chanse.
December 28, 2010 3:27:30 PM

Disk defrag may help more than a registry cleaner. What is probably happening is that the game data needs tome to catch up to load, I am thinking more RAM will help you more than anything else in this case, then a video card, then a new hard drive. New install of XP will give you a temp boost, but even that is not certain. Maybe even a faster CD drive if any of the data gets loaded from CD.
December 28, 2010 3:55:35 PM

Hmm, i think i might have just found the solution, i don't have enough time to test it if it was just good timings or it actually is the cause of the problem. I tried using a different wireless adapter (bit newer) and played for about 10 mins and didn't notice any lag spikes. anyway will confirm tommorow when i have time.

I got the idea of a really old topic in the related section below to try with a different wireless adapter, makes sense if it was the cause as it does only happen while playing online, didn't come to my head at first because my xbox is wireless too, never though it could be a problem. Now lets hope that it did actually fix it and that i'm not just over exaggerating over nothing.
!